Mineworkings is a photographic-based project on the theme of revisiting Scottish mining communities. This involved new photographs as well as incorporating a range of archival photographs, audio reminiscences and display of key personal artefacts related to my participants, who were at the heart of this project. The inspiration came from a group of photographs of Scottish miners and their families taken by the American photographer Milton Rogovin in 1982. His photographs are in the collection of the National Galleries of Scotland. With the photographer’s medium format contact sheets as starting points, Mineworkings realised new work through close collaboration with those same communities visited by Rogovin in 1982. The resulting artworks are on show alongside the photographs of Milton Rogovin as part Before and After Coal: Images and Voices from Scotland’s Mining Communities. This is also the 40th year anniversary of the miners’ strike (1984-85).

List of Resources

Mineworkings: Ayrshire
For this blog three pairs of photographs have been selected to share more of the stories from Ayrshire participants. Alongside short audio interview extracts, the blog also discuss the roles that photographs and other forms of memorabilia have played in my work. Below are links to the full interviews with former miners (audio and transcripts).

Interview with Jim McMahon

‘…once it gets in your blood, it’s in your blood…’

Interview with Donald Fulton

‘…I’ve got to say I’m fiercely proud that I was a miner…’

Further resources, including interviews, blogs for Fife and Midlothian, full list of credits and thanks coming soon.

Use of Milton Rogovin’s contact sheets is with kind agreement from the Rogovin Family.
Courtesy of Library of Congress

TOP IMAGE (detail)

Donald Fulton, East Ayrshire III, 2023
Detail from Mineworkings by Nicky Bird